Wednesday, February 1, 2012

February first half

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satellite map of Mir forest (Neve Yaakov forest) and surrounded fields (bounded to north and east by security wall and fence, to south and west by Pisgat Zeev and Neve Yaakov.

1st Feb.


did get some birds between rainfalls about 40 mins starting about 4.30 ish, valley road to bridge. garden: house sparrows, heard hooded crows , jackdaws and collared dove and ring neck parakeets. sunbird calls cape honeysuckle, feral pigeon on solar boiler.

Collared dove near pumping station flying into tree, syrian woodpecker calls, great tit (some song) calls near Shadiker hyrax colony, Prinia calls, blackbird alarm, bulbul various calls from north watercourse area , white wagtails over, eurasian jay in cypresses by valley road, other finches and warblers in pine tree canopies barely glimpsed but for one lone linnet (?) (striated with hint of pink but no other details) calling repeatedly and plaintively on top of pine as if to say ''where'd they all go??'' .white wagtails over, calls, activity warblers, finches pine canopies not IDd. Temp between 6 & 7 degrees, some sleet earlier, rain most of last day , some hail.

2nd Feb.

this afternoon: pleasant walk, cool/mild, sunny with cumulus. Sapling field blooming with much spring groundsel, a small orange composite and lilac/violet coloured Roman storksbill. Birds included chukar partridge, a pair of kestrels, bulbuls, jays, linnets, white wagtail and such, several gazelle about including a buck chasing a female on shepherd's trail, and barks of hyraxes. First monkwort blooming. May post some pics a bit later.

4th Feb

dense flowered fumitory seen flowering again for first time this season today! Also, various wild geraniums and more asphodel, red anemone and spring groundsel. birds included kestrels, chukar partridge, Prinias, black redstart, stonechat, ring neck parakeets, sunbird, yellow vented bulbul, collared and laughing doves.. also gazelle, male chasing female.

5th Feb

lovely walk .. found first Roman squill and Malcolmia of the season, a small herd of gazelle in NE field, some grazing, some friskily romping around, in head butting mood, Syrian woodpeckers, chukar partridge, stonechat, Prinias and a blackbird singing in the pines as dusk deepened & Venus shone in the western sky.

6th Feb

We got glimpse of a sparrowhawk by look out corner, also stonechat on our way down.. we got a pic of it, not great but recognizable.. may post later.. calls of syrian woodpecker, Prinia, yellow vented bulbul, chukar partridges and a sunbird in the cape honeysuckle on our way out. 9 gazelle grazing in north east field/lower hillslopes, also a little running about and play/sparring .

Tues 7 feb

found some white broom blooming today! Mandrakes also beginning to flower. Overcast, temps down today from 15 ish yesterday to about 7, 8 winds cold enough to make earaches and most sensible birds had sought cover.. not a single feral pigeon visible on any rooftop and most common birds silent and out of sight but white wagtails flying in small groups to roost till sunset. Sunbird in cape honeysuckle on the way out, stone curlew heard once at dusk way over beyond forest, and bachelor herd, group of 12 adult male gazelle seen grazing just across north watercourse. Earlier in and about garden: lots of house sparrows, jackdaws and hoodies on rooftops, squawks of ring neck parakeets,

Wed 8 Feb

garden: lots of house sparrows coming down as usual for chicken feed, calls of ring neck parakeets but still not seen coming down into garden, melodious bulbul calls, jackdaws, hooded crows, white wagtail calls from street, feral pigeon on top of building, laughing dove coos and foraging on ground.. again no sunbird

Just under 10 degrees C at about 4,30 p.m. winds light WSW, humidity 49%.. adult male gazelle top of the shepherd's trail looking down at us, dusk bark of hyrax up bank from gazelle road, black redstart bunker rubble, on diagonal blocks and rebar, stonechat over near bat cave, , kestrel hunting from line over hilliside, Syrian woodpeckers look out corner, Eurasian jay in pine by north watercourse trail, Prinia calls, great tit call. Chukar calls heard over north watercourse, blackbird alarm calls in east pines. Great tit calls by north watercourse.

Thurs 9 Feb

Garden, from house earlier.. house sparrows, ring neck parakeet, melodious bulbul calls, jackdaws, hooded crow & feral pigeon on roof, white wagtails.

4.20 p.m. temp just under 9 degrees, very light south westerly winds & about 60% humidity.

Found 11 female and well grown young gazelle grazing by north watercourse.. male and female stonechat nearby, black redstart near cistern on the rubble again.. at least one comes there every winter for last few years.. could be same individual.. also several collared doves on line near confluence , a blackbird in song near east watercouse competing with all the sunset muezzins and sunbird in the cape honeysuckle by our entrance.

Friday 10 Feb

Garden: sunbird and graceful warbler in cape honeysuckle pair seen foraging over me, blackbird in song in gardens towards sunset. Jackdaws, house sparrows, laughing doves and Hooded crows. Briefly, ring neck parakeet, white wagtail. Stone curlews somewhere in east field near windsurfer hill later, after dark.

Saturday 11 Feb

Garden: sunbird in cape honeysuckle heard briefly. Early afternoon two hoodies harassing apparently sparrowhawk circling high above road, striped tail, not sure. Another raptor circling over road a bit farther south but couldn't make out enough detail if kestrel or sparrowhawk.

Watched hoodie on roof.. alternated three note call, higher and purer attention grabbing note and lower more croaky notes.. appeared to have some nesting material it would pick up and put down again.. advertising?

Jackdaws, feral pigeons, hooded crows, house sparrows on roofs. Bulbuls heard a number of times, ring neck parakeet briefly. laughing doves foraging in garden and coos. Some blackbird song next door garden, other side from last night.

Valley: Heard white breasted kingfisher, flying up and down east valley watercourse towards sunset.. have not heard it in months so good to hear it again!

Also: 3 gazelle near almond row, adult male gazelle heading from lower east field into Pistacia orchard area, two others Akiva glimpsed. 1 adult hyrax by Shadiker colony near trail, foraging.

Sunday 12 Feb

blackbird singing in gardens this morning about nineish, bulbul calls, sunbird in cape honeysuckle, the usual laughing doves, house sparrows, feral pigeons, hooded crows, jackdaws, white wagtails about, ring neck parakeets squawking by mid afternoon. In the woods, Syrian woodpecker calls, Eurasian jays, Prinias and other small insectivorous jobs deep in the pine canopies, collared dove on a line, glimpse of sparrowhawk.

The lobed purple flowers of deadnettle have begun to bloom by the roadside.

No gazelle or hyrax found today. No black redstart at rubble.

Temps around 14 degrees C, winds still.

Monday 13th Feb

A few gazelle grazing by north watercourse, blackbird song, (next door's garden and by east watercourse) chiffchaffs foraging in acacias and pines, syrian woodpecker calls and stone curlew brief call on the way back as caught by Akiva.. usual birdy gang in the garden and street: bulbuls calling earlier, sunbird brief in cape honeysuckle, laughing doves cooing and foraging, ring neck parakeets by mid afternoon. House sparrows, feral pigeons on roof, jackdaws, hooded crows, brief graceful warbler call.

Temps just over 15 after 4, high altitude mixed clouds as yesterday, mostly sunny, light westerlies.

Tuesday 14th Feb

garden: house sparrows foraging, laughing doves also, and cooing. Jackdaws, hooded crows, ring neck parakeet, bulbuls about street, sunbirds in entrance as usual, not sure if white wagtails, not so obvious today.

By 4.30 p.m overcast but mild/warm, over 15 degrees C. great tits, chiffchaffs vocal, blackbird singing near pumping station, sparrowhawk up slopes windsurfer somewhere, syrian woodpeckers heard, graceful warblers briefly, great tit various calls by north watercourse trail including some song end of Shadiker. Black redstart absent from rubble nor stonechats seen or heard. Left already?

bachelor herd gazelle on hill ridge to north, at least 7.

shepherd's purse blooming last few days, lots of red anemone and spring groundsel, Roman squill, now also noticing thorny burnet flowering. Polygonum, wild mustard by roadside.

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